Movement is life. The flow of blood nourishes our body. The exchange of neurotransmitters and electrons in our cells is a fundamental activity of life. The movement of our bowels is the mechanism by which we let go of toxins and impurities. Folks, we all do it. But when we don’t, it can lead to serious issues if left untreated. Most people think of constipation as the cessation of bowel movements whether acutely or chronically. However, any difficulty in elimination or the passage of stools is a form of constipation, which may be a sign of a deeper condition.
In Western medical terms, having three or fewer bowel movements per week indicates constipation. Though usually not a serious issue that relieves itself, keeping any lingering toxins in our body abnormally is a manifestation of stagnation. For some reason or another, the body is holding on and having difficulty letting go. For a Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) practitioner, we see this pattern often.
Food and emotions are deeply connected. If we do not attend to our emotions, we can establish poor eating habits. We may turn to food to ease our minds or distract us. Food can make us feel good. Food can also make us feel terrible. It can be a slippery slope. When people feel “stuck” emotionally, this creates obstructions in our bodies. Those obstructions may show up as constipation. The energy does not flow, and with it, we build up a collection of impurities that have a toxic effect.
Constipation is fairly easy to diagnose. Few bowel movements, difficulty upon elimination, hard stools, tenesmus (ineffectual urge to evacuate the bowels), or a feeling of incomplete defecation, are all mild to moderate symptoms of constipation. Treating constipation may be as simple as food therapy, such as adding more fiber containing foods or decreasing specific foods like dairy. Increasing water intake is another method as fluids moisten the bowels and stools for easier movement.
Many times though, constipation is an expression of some emotional energy that needs to pass. These are tougher to distinguish as we may not even be consciously aware of this. Acupuncture was conceived to bring balance to the body. To do that, energy must flow naturally without any obstruction. Through the course of acupuncture treatment, patients report becoming aware of feelings that were previously obscured. We all have reasons to hide feelings and emotions from ourselves, it is a defense mechanism. Acupuncture is one of the best ways to process emotions, as it provides a safety net for healthful expression. We can allow our bodies to let go fully. Once we dump these impediments, either emotional or physiological, we can also dump what else needs to go.
We understand that it may be uncomfortable to say how uncomfortable you may feel. The expert practitioners at Lakewood Ranch Acupuncture and Wellness are skilled at helping you on your healing journey. To our neighbors in Sarasota and Bradenton, Florida, we are right in your backyard to be a part of your wellness team. Call our office today to schedule your next appointment with our medical specialists!